Jason Day says vanquishing his fear of losing has freed him to achieve his lifelong Masters dream next week.
Day, joint runner-up at Augusta National in 2011 and third behind Adam Scott in 2013, has been a serial `positive talker’ about his experiences at a golf course he cherishes above all others.
But yesterday, as he spoke to the Australian media, the world No.5 referred liberally to his “failures” and having “lost” in 2013 after he stood on the 16th tee with the lead before finishing bogey-bogey-par and allowing Scott and Angel Cabera to surge past.
Now fully fit after an injury-plagued 2014 campaign, the Queenslander is confident that he “wants it more” than ever – and his rivals.
And that his honesty with past losses is the key.
“It slowly occurred to me,” Day said from his Ohio home just two days before leaving for his fifth Masters assault.
“I’m OK to go out there, give it my all and fail.
“It’s something that we’re going to do a lot of (as golfers) and I just realised it this year that it’s OK to go out there and give it your all and fail because I’m always going to come out better on the other side.
“Everyone has values in their lives that shape what they’re going to do … and those values are there as a security blanket, really, to go do I really want to push through it or do I want to run and hide.
“I want to improve and I know I’m going to improve from those values.
“I’m not going to win every event out there, but I definitely am going to win more than the three I have on the (US) PGA Tour.
“I feel very strongly about what I’m doing with my body, what I’m doing on the golf course and really confident in my ability – so this coming week is exciting for me.”
And Day, 27, whose power game and deft touch are viewed by many experts as a perfect blend for Augusta National, made no bones of his intentions.
“There’s a lot of history and tradition behind this tournament and I hold it close to my heart,” he said.
“It’s on a pedestal above some of the events we play – and this is the one I really want to win.”